Veteran Los Angeles Police Department detective, Leonard Avalos, plead guilty today to grand theft and resigned from the force for embezzling thousands of dollars in witness-relocation funds.
Superior Court Judge David Horwitz immediately sentenced Leonard Avalos to 90 days in county jail and three years probation, according to Deputy District Attorney Fernando Guzman.
The judge also ordered Avalos to pay just over $30,000 in restitution to the LAPD’s Fiscal Operations Division by Dec. 15.
More than $30,000 was disbursed to Avalos to relocate three crime victims who were eligible for the witness-protection program, according to the prosecutor. Only one of the victims was relocated. The theft occurred between Feb. 15 and June 20, 2008, while Avalos was assigned to the LAPD’s Southwest Detective Division.
Los Angeles: On May 13, 2010, Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) investigators from the department’s Professional Standards Bureau arrested 45-year-old Leonard Avalos. Avalos is a 17-year veteran of the LAPD, currently assigned to the Southwest Detective Division.
The arrest was made without incident on Thursday evening while Avalos was off duty in the City of Placentia.
Avalos was booked at the Los Angeles County Men’s Central Jail Facility on a felony arrest warrant for a single count of embezzlement and six counts of grand theft. Bail was set at $120,000.
Avalos is the subject of both criminal and administrative investigations. His duty status will be "assigned to home" pending the conclusion of the investigations.
The case continues to be a collaborative effort between the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s, Bureau of Investigations, their Justice System Integrity Division and the Los Angeles Police Department’s Special Operations Division.
All inquiries should be directed to the Los Angeles Police Department Special Operations Division at 213-473-5672.